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22Download holiday itineraries fromwww.mountainkingdoms.come: info@mountainkingdoms.comTibet Holy Mountains of TibetT ibetans hold many of their mountains sacred, but Mount Kailash is the most significant of all. From this isolated, perfectly shaped peak, spring four of Asia's most important rivers; the Indus, the Yarlung Tsangpo (Brahmaputra), a tributary of the Ganges, and the Sutlej. Our trek begins in Simikot, Nepal, following an ancient trail. This relatively little trekked route offers plenty of scenic and cultural interest, as well as ideal acclimatisation for our time in Tibet, where we arrive on the shores of Lake Manasarovar, the holiest lake in Asia. After completing the pilgrimage kora around Kailash itself, we'll attend the annual festival of Saga Dawa, held at the foot of the mountain. Finally we make the impressive drive across the Tibetan plateau to Zhangmu and thence back to Kathmandu. F ounded in the 10th Century, Guge was a seat of power that once ruled over parts of Zanskar, Spiti and Ladakh. Today the ancient kingdom's remote location (it lies 1,200 miles/1,900km from Lhasa) makes it one of the least visited areas of Tibet and therefore a special highlight of this memorable trip. Trekking from Simikot in Nepal, we cross the border to reach Lake Manasarovar and then drive on to visit Tsarparang and Tholing. Tsarparang, the former capital of Guge, is one of the unknown wonders of the world - a city of cave dwellings which pepper a mountain, atop which stands the royal palace. Driving to Darchen we now undertake the four-day kora around Mount Kailash, before ending our exciting adventure with a drive back to Nepal, across the Tibetan plateau.T his remarkable trek takes us to a little visited part of eastern Tibet. Flying into Lijiang, we travel northwards via Tiger Leaping Gorge and Zhongdian to reach the trading outpost of Dechen. From here it's a short drive to the banks of the Mekong, and the start of our trek. Whereas Mount Kailash in western Tibet represents the body of the Buddha, Kawa Karpo represents the mind emanation of the Buddha. Therefore our circuit of the mountain (kora), often in the company of devout pilgrims, bestows considerable merit. In total we cross five high passes and trek through an amazingly diverse range of scenery from dense forests dripping with orchids, to alpine yak pastures and arid semi-desert. Very few westerners have trekked here, so this truly is a trip of exploration and discovery. Mount Kailash & the Saga Dawa FestivalTrekking from Nepal into Tibet to join pilgrims on the Kailash Kora and at Saga Dawa.Mount Kailash & the Kingdom of GugeTrekking from Nepal into Tibet to complete the Kailash Kora and visit the ancient Kingdom of Guge.The Kawa Karpo Pilgrimage A unique and stunningly beautiful trek around sacred Kawa Karpo (6,740m/22,113ft).£3,095£3,795£3,375£3,975£2,855£3,695Land OnlyFlight IncludedLand OnlyFlight IncludedLand OnlyFlight IncludedSun 29 May - Tue 21 Jun 11Sun 11 Sep - Thu 06 Oct 11Thu 19 May - Sat 11 Jun 11Thu 15 Sep - Sat 08 Oct 11On Trek: 12 days Appointed Leader: Steve HarbertAccommodation (nts): Hotels: 6 Camping: 16Optional: Single Room £175 Single Tent £120Insurance: £154On Trek: 11 days Appointed Leader: Beetle GravesAccommodation (nts): Hotels: 5 Camping: 19Optional: Single Room £155 Single Tent £135Insurance: £169On Trek: 15 days Local LeaderAccommodation (nts): Hotels: 7 Camping: 14Optional: Single Room £180 Single Tent £145Insurance: £154Trek | Duration: 24 DaysTrek | Duration: 26 DaysTrek | Duration: 24 DaysGuaranteed to run for a minimum of 5 clientsGuaranteed to run for a minimum of 5 clientsGuaranteed to run for a minimum of 4 clientsGrade: StrenuousGrade: StrenuousGrade: Strenuous Tibetan girls, Steve BerryFor detailed itineraries see www.mountainkingdoms.comFor detailed itineraries see www.mountainkingdoms.comFor detailed itineraries see www.mountainkingdoms.comFestival

23telephone: 0845 330 8579 (local call rate, UK only)international telephone: +44 1453 844 400www.mountainkingdoms.comW e begin with a spectacular flight from Kathmandu to Lhasa, where we'll take time to acclimatise, exploring the Potala Palace and other famous sights in the city. It's then a four-day drive across the Tibetan Plateau, via Gyantse, Shigatse and Shegar to reach our trail head, near Sherpa Tenzing's birthplace. To reach Kangshung Base Camp we cross the Langma La (5,330m/17,500ft) and pass through a landscape of soaring ridges, isolated settlements and wonderful vistas. This is perhaps the last of the Everest trekking routes that offers a total wilderness experience. Lhotse and Makalu, the world's fourth and fifth highest mountains, are close by, and as we leave to travel into Nepal, we'll also spend two nights at Rongbuk, exploring close to the original Everest Base Camp of Mallory and Irvine fame. F rom Kathmandu, a short drive takes us to Balephi Valley in the Jugal Himal. Little frequented by Western trekkers, this area provides for a glorious five-day hike to the Tibetan border and, with altitudes of up to 4,000m/13,200ft gained, invaluable acclimatisation. Crossing the Friendship Bridge into Tibet, we drive up onto the arid Tibetan Plateau to reach Rongbuk Valley. From here the world's highest mountain is at its most spectacular, rising in a sheer 3,000m/10,000ft wall from the head of the high altitude valley. Following in the footsteps of Mallory and Irvine as they searched for possible routes from which to launch an ascent of Everest, we walk up the historic Rongbuk Glacier and have time to take in the atmosphere of the original Everest Base Camp. We continue our dramatic Tibetan journey visiting the major towns and monasteries of Shegar, Shigatse and Gyantse before arriving in the 'Forbidden City' of Lhasa - perhaps the most celebrated of all Himalayan capitals. Here we end our memorable time in Tibet on a high with visits to the Potala Palace, Jokhang Monastery and the evocative streets of Barkhor.Everest's Kangshung Face & the Rongbuk Glacier Perhaps the most dramatic of all Everest treks, following the Kangshung glacier towards the mountain's East Face. Trail to Tibet - North Face of EverestA great trek in Nepal, combined with a journey to Lhasa via the original Everest Base Camp. Guaranteed to run for a minimum of 4 clients£2,395£2,395£2,515£3,095£3,050£3,250Land OnlyLand OnlyLand OnlyFlight IncludedFlight IncludedFlight IncludedSat 02 Apr - Sun 24 Apr 11?Sat 01 Oct - Sun 23 Oct 11?On Trek: 10 daysAppointed Leader: Mike Ford?Roope Roine?tbc?Accommodation (nts): Hotels: 10 Camping: 10 Guesthouse: 1Optional: Single Room £200 Tibet Single Room Kathmandu £75 Single Tent: £75Insurance: £99Trek | Duration: 23 DaysOther Everest treks - see pages 30, 31, 32 & 33Grade: Vigorous On Trek: 11 daysAppointed Leader: Graham HoylandAccommodation (nts): Hotels: 10 Guest House: 1 Camping: 12Optional: Single Room £225 Tibet Single Room Kathmandu £75 Single Tent £100Insurance: £154 Trek | Duration: 25 DaysOther Everest treks - see pages 30, 31, 32 & 33£3,460£4,050Land OnlyFlight IncludedSat 17 Sep - Tue 11 Oct 11Grade: Strenuous Guaranteed to run for a minimum of 5 clientsFor detailed itineraries see www.mountainkingdoms.comFor detailed itineraries see www.mountainkingdoms.comEverest Tibet TibetSat 24 Mar - Sun 15 Apr 12?Mount Everest, Holly Barber